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Old 08-30-2019, 11:50 AM
bu2 bu2 started this thread
 
10,276 posts, read 6,600,146 times
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https://www.citylab.com/transportati...istory/597055/

Interesting article on the commuter law. For thousands of years, people have decided they will only live 30 minutes or less from work. Shows the development of cities with modes of transportation. Compares walking Rome to train London to Streetcar Chicago to Car city Atlanta.

Of course the conclusion is that we are reaching our limits with present technology.


"...The constant in transportation technology from the mid-19th to the mid-20th century was change. New modes repeatedly extended the boundaries of cities and changed the way we lived. But that was an aberration over the course of human history. Since then? Not too much has changed. A person can navigate New York City almost perfectly with a fifty-year-old map.

This has had real consequences. In spread-out metros that are growing in population, highways quickly become overcrowded; expanding them is costly and ultimately ineffective. Commute speeds are slowing inexorably as congestion increases. In North America, at least, rail transit is too expensive to build in meaningful amounts and it faces formidable ideological opposition. And the vaunted self-driving car, as imminent and yet illusory as nuclear fusion, will not transform the basic geometry of road capacity. Could they squeeze out a few percent more from the legacy of the 1950s and 60s? Maybe. But that will buy us at most a few years.

The greatest promise for matching technology to the modern worker has always been the idea of divorcing work from transportation entirely: telecommuting. The tools that would enable white-collar workers to clock in remotely have been available for decades and have improved dramatically in the digital era. That could theoretically finally enable Wright’s vision of the complete dispersal of population. But would it? Despite evidence to the contrary, employers remain skeptical of the productivity of remote workers. And any number of human drives keep people stubbornly collocating to be closer to family, friends, and cultural amenities as well as their workplaces. These drives are unlikely to change with technology—and thus, our transportation dilemma is likely to endure.

The best option is to densify our cities. This is hard, too: Adding housing in established neighborhoods will always be more complex and expensive than building on empty farmland. Real estate also remains comparatively cheap in declining or decentralized cities. When many people don’t really care how close they are to the historic urban center, like in Atlanta or Houston, cities can sprawl basically ad infinitum. But the environmental cost is huge, and it’s simply not an option in parts of the country where cities have already grown into each other, like the Northeast Corridor and Southern California.

For a century, we lived off the legacy of rapid innovation. It allowed our cities to grow exponentially and, therefore, the cost of our housing to decrease dramatically. But we’ve now pretty much burned through the benefits of these gains and there aren’t obvious technological saviors on the horizon. We must make do mostly with building up and densifying the urban areas we already have. As transportation goes, so go our cities."

 
Old 08-30-2019, 12:01 PM
 
8,437 posts, read 10,414,295 times
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Isn't it kind of a greater problem of simple overpopulation? I mean... you can increase density, but you can only do so much of it before resources get strained.

What we need to do is pay attention to the rules of the Georgia Guidestones! Or get a nice Thanos snap.

In all seriousness, what maybe we need to do is challenge the notion that the only way to thrive is to grow. Maybe... there's another way???
 
Old 08-30-2019, 12:04 PM
 
Location: Vinings
6,386 posts, read 3,504,284 times
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We need "smart lanes" and new ideas like that. Congestion tolling everywhere.

I could make the argument that our existing road system infrastructure could be more than fine or even could be excellent for our needs going forward for decades: *IF* we simply used the space more efficiently in terms of persons per vehicle and how many people we're moving on the roads per hour in road vehicles. How fast they're able to go.

Single Occupant Vehicle is far too overly dominant in the mix now, and needs to be drastically decreased. We need more people in large buses that are basically light rail trains, more people in regular buses, more people in small buses and van pool ride shares and etc, and more people in shared ride shares and car pooling and just a lot higher average vehicular occupancy.

If we did that, rail wouldn't be really necessary for Metro Atlanta, and the freeways like I-85 would move everyone around rapidly as they were supposed to do.
 
Old 08-30-2019, 12:24 PM
 
10,780 posts, read 7,653,313 times
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The difference is that unlike walking / bikes / trains, single occupancy cars cannot handle the volume of people that need to move around a large city. As more people drive, you get more traffic congestion and longer travel times that defeat the whole purpose of traveling by car in the first place.

So, yeah, the solution is to density so higher capacity options can become a more viable option for most people.
 
Old 08-30-2019, 10:18 PM
 
103 posts, read 26,209 times
Reputation: 149
Quote:
Originally Posted by primaltech View Post
We need "smart lanes" and new ideas like that. Congestion tolling everywhere.

I could make the argument that our existing road system infrastructure could be more than fine or even could be excellent for our needs going forward for decades: *IF* we simply used the space more efficiently in terms of persons per vehicle and how many people we're moving on the roads per hour in road vehicles. How fast they're able to go.

Single Occupant Vehicle is far too overly dominant in the mix now, and needs to be drastically decreased. We need more people in large buses that are basically light rail trains, more people in regular buses, more people in small buses and van pool ride shares and etc, and more people in shared ride shares and car pooling and just a lot higher average vehicular occupancy.

If we did that, rail wouldn't be really necessary for Metro Atlanta, and the freeways like I-85 would move everyone around rapidly as they were supposed to do.
Buses have a branding problem. If you live or spend any time in Washington, DC, you'll find that both the haves and the have nots are utilizing their bus system. Our bus system is not much different from WMATA but sees very little use from young professionals (in my experiences with MARTA buses, which admittedly is very little...case-in-point).
 
Old 08-30-2019, 11:47 PM
 
5,284 posts, read 3,399,091 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ATLUTD View Post
Buses have a branding problem. If you live or spend any time in Washington, DC, you'll find that both the haves and the have nots are utilizing their bus system. Our bus system is not much different from WMATA but sees very little use from young professionals (in my experiences with MARTA buses, which admittedly is very little...case-in-point).
It's not just the stigma or branding. Look at the route maps for the two systems. The bus system in Washington has a pretty clear and concise route map, and it looks to be pretty easy to navigate using only a couple of busses to get to most locations. Contrast that to the MARTA bus map. It looks like a pile of spaghetti, with meandering lines largely focused towards downtown and midtown. It can often take at least 3, sometimes more transfers just to go 6-8 miles. That's a hard sell.
 
Old Yesterday, 06:06 AM
 
29,581 posts, read 26,644,910 times
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Maybe the ATL has just gotten too big. I'd be willing to share some of our population with other cities, many of whom don't have enough.
 
Old Yesterday, 06:18 AM
 
1,677 posts, read 1,760,209 times
Reputation: 1301
Quote:
Originally Posted by jsvh View Post
The difference is that unlike walking / bikes / trains, single occupancy cars cannot handle the volume of people that need to move around a large city. As more people drive, you get more traffic congestion and longer travel times that defeat the whole purpose of traveling by car in the first place.
You’re right. No other form of transportation is slowed down by congestion. /s
 
Old Yesterday, 02:45 PM
 
86 posts, read 35,128 times
Reputation: 115
Is there any real reason to have huge office buildings anymore? Seems like a simple way to cut down on a lot of traffic right there is not make people show up at an office every day.
 
Old Yesterday, 02:48 PM
 
86 posts, read 35,128 times
Reputation: 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by samiwas1 View Post
It's not just the stigma or branding. Look at the route maps for the two systems. The bus system in Washington has a pretty clear and concise route map, and it looks to be pretty easy to navigate using only a couple of busses to get to most locations. Contrast that to the MARTA bus map. It looks like a pile of spaghetti, with meandering lines largely focused towards downtown and midtown. It can often take at least 3, sometimes more transfers just to go 6-8 miles. That's a hard sell.

You are both correct. Atlanta's public transportation system is an embarrassment. And for whatever reason, many people in Atlanta view the transportation system only as a way for poor folk to get around.
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